Entrepreneurs have their favorites when it comes to promoting their brand and marketing their products or services.
One of the popular favorites is the classic optimization of their blog content. Others like the attention they get from video exposure as they host focused webinars. There are also those who explore non-traditional social media channels (the ones aside from popular platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to name a few).
Why is your marketing strategy so important? Because your overall game plan for reaching potential clients and customers directly impacts your sales.
So the question is: How do you get in front of your audience in a non-aggressive, non-pushy yet fun way?
You guessed it - launch a podcast.
If you’re looking for a way to get in front of your audience and attract valuable clients and customers who will stick around without breaking the bank, then podcasting is one of the marketing strategies that would allow you to accomplish all these.
This week, I share some tried and tested powerhouse podcast launch strategies for eager entrepreneurs whose passion is to share their “solutions” to their audience’s problems and pain points.
#1: Avoid procrastination.
If there is one thing you need to remember about a good show is that it takes much work.
No pain, no gain.
While you’re looking at Podcast Launch To Do List, it can be so tempting to put things off - especially when there are so many unticked items on your list.
Have you set up your social media accounts - Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest? Have you set up all your podcast destinations - Apple Podcast, Spotify, or Pandora - and have them approved?
It may feel overwhelming at first, and it may seem like the tasks are never-ending. So, how do you stay motivated and avoid procrastination?
Keep the end in mind.
Establish a good working habit that will help you get ahead of the pack. Your efforts are worth the late night recordings and the hours of brainstorming once your show starts touching - and changing - the lives of people.
#2: Strategically plan your launch to benefit other marketing campaigns.
Before your market trusts you, they should first know (not to mention like) you. Your podcast is one of the avenues where your audience gets to have an idea about who you are and what your message is.
With this said, it makes total sense to put your show at the top of your marketing sales funnel. Since your podcast is a part of one big marketing plan, it is best to strategize your podcast launch details to benefit your other marketing campaigns.
Allot as much time to your podcast as you would any other part on your sales funnel to make sure that your efforts are complementing and not competing or contradicting each other.
#3: Create a production schedule.
Other people call it a production calendar. I prefer to call it a production schedule tracker.
Having a good, organized, and easy-to-use production schedule tracker will help you save a tremendous amount of time on finding the nitty-gritty details of each of your podcast episodes.
Aside from the obvious purpose of keeping track of the essential dates for recording, interviewing, and releasing, this tracker also allows you to index other episode information such as episode number, title, subtitle, guest name, and guest email.
Other podcasters also use this scheduler to monitor any other pending tasks before going live such as show notes completion, creation of compelling calls-to-action, even the timestamp for the episode audiogram, if any.
#4: Launch with a minimum of 10 episodes.
According to Kate Astrakhan, an audio engineer, technical podcast producer, and founder of Podcast Network Solutions who has been in the business for three decades, the 10-show launch is what they found to be a success in an ideal podcast launch. It can be a combination of monologues and guest interviews.
You may ask: Why so many?
For one, your audience doesn’t know you (aside from your spouse, your parents, and your best friend). This number will help develop trust and relationship between you and your audience.
Second, with the hundreds of thousands of podcasts out there, how do you expect to be noticed with a one or five-show launch? Kate illustrates this perfectly when she said,
“You don't want to launch with one show - that's like a drop of rain in an ocean!”
Podcasting pro Sigrun Gudjonsdottir understands this concept very well. When she launched her podcast The Sigrun Show, she prepared not only ten shows for her launch but 100. (Yep, you read that right - 100! Definitely BOLD!)
#5: Be realistic in your expectations.
Like what I mentioned in the prepared item, your first few listeners would probably be the people closest to you. At some point, you may even be discouraged if you don’t see your numbers go up or get zero engagement from your audience.
When you feel like giving up, think of podcasting as a marathon.
Runners maximize every movement for endurance. You, my dear podcaster, need to maximize each episode to improve brand awareness, gain your audience’s trust, and move closer to your business goal.
Being the entrepreneur that you are, set realistic goals and expectations. This is vital so you don’t go into podfading.
#6: Flood the social media market.
Ahhh, social media - everyone is on it!
It is needless to say how crucial social media is in your marketing strategy. Video posts, audiograms, and the Story function are gaining the most traction on most social media platforms.
But you may be wondering: How many posts should I publish in a day?
The ideal is eight to ten posts for each platform in one day. If you are serious about grabbing your audience’s attention and are willing to take things to the next level, go for 25 posts per platform per day.
If you’re feeling your heart racing right now as you think about the content you’re going to put up, there are a lot of nuggets of wisdom you will find on the Podcast Rockstar episode titled Effective Podcast Launch Strategies.
#7: Promote upcoming guests before the episode goes live.
Once you have identified and confirmed the guests for your 10-show launch, you can start promoting them even before you hit the record button.
I can almost hear you thinking: Wouldn’t this be an unnecessary, added task on top of the thousands of things I still need to do before the launch?
If your guests are known and popular in their industry, imagine what will come up when someone searches for them, and you have them promoted across all your social media platforms?
You’re right - you.
A simple quote about their episode topic sent via email would get the ball rolling.
That’s it? Is it that simple?
Yes, it’s that simple.
#8: Ignore New and Noteworthy and charts for at least the first 3 months.
As an entrepreneur, you breathe numbers and statistics. The data you gather is one of the ways you measure, quantify, and validate your success.
With this said, this next item could be quite a challenge for you - ignore your statistics for the first three months upon launching your show.
Why should you do that?
First, like what I said on #4, your audience needs to know who you are and why they should listen to you. As you and your knowledgeable guests share your wisdom to your listeners, you gain your audience’s trust, which begins the relationship between you and your listener.
This step may take time, but like what I always tell my children when they are learning a new skill, “Slowly but surely.”
#9: Respect your listeners time.
What does this mean - to respect your listener’s time?
More often than not, listening to podcast is a passive experience, which means that many podcast fans listen to their favorite shows while doing another activity.
Some listen to podcasts while on the treadmill. Others do it on their way to work or school. There are those who enjoy the show while preparing a hearty meal for the family.
As an entrepreneur, you know who your audience is (or the people you want to attract) and have probably done your homework and studied when your listeners would tune in.
That said, show respect for your listeners’ time as you consider your audience’s other activities when you determine how long each episode should be.
#10: Really think about your goals for your show and how they align with your business goals.
Different podcasters start a podcast for various reasons. Whatever your reason is for creating a podcast, make sure that your show goals and business goals are aligned.
Think about what you want to happen when you interview industry leaders and thought influencers. How do you give value to your listeners and potential clients?
As you reach an audience that non-competing companies and businesses are willing to pay big money for through sponsorships and you consistently deliver high-quality value through your podcast, how does this new audience impact your business goals? What potential do you see for your company and your services?
Remember, your podcast and your business are not two independent entities. They should complement each other and aim to achieve parallel, if not the same business goals.
Take care of your listeners. They, together with your list, play the most significant role in the success (or failure) of your business.
Is podcasting for you?
While many entrepreneurs create a podcast as part of their marketing strategy, it may come as a surprise to know that podcasting is not for everyone. With all the powerhouse podcast launch strategies we discussed in this post, we see the amount of planning and work that goes into podcast production.
Before you gather your team and start brainstorming on episode topics and a podcast name, consider the pros and cons of hosting a show. If you find yourself struggling to prioritize recording and podcast planning, if you can’t allot the necessary time for pre and post-production, then podcasting may not be for you.
If you really want to launch a podcast, but all the tasks such as booking guests, editing recordings, or writing the show notes seem overwhelming to you, you can always outsource these other tasks so that all you have to do is stay in your zone of genius and “speak.”
If you have thought this through and you can guarantee to devote time and effort into this new yet exciting venture, podcasting will surely be a win-win for you, your business, and especially your listeners.
What strategies worked best when you launched your show? Was there a launch strategy you wished you did when you started your podcast?
We’d love to hear your insights on this topic. Share them in the comments below.